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Full text of "NightRider"

picked up the lamp he would carry up with him. As he
mounted the stairs, his posture seemed a little like that of an
ageing man. Or perhaps, Mr. Munn thought, it was a trick of
the light. He watched Mr. Christian all the way up and out
of sight. The shadow cast by the lamp Mr. Christian held
moved up the wall beside him, enormous, swaying and bounc-
ing with a soundless and free elasticity as though by its efforts
it dragged the man upward, like a dead weight.

When Mr. Christian had disappeared beyond the head of
the stairs, Mr. Munn turned to the girl. " Did you get Ben-
ton Todd into the night riders?5' he demanded.

" No,1' she answered thoughtfully, studying his face.

" You didn't tell him about your father being in? Or me?"

" He's not a fool," she said. " Everybody else knows, and
knew a long time back. And why shouldn't he? He was
around here a lot. And was here nights when you all were
off riding."

"Did he ask you about it?"

"Yes, but I lied to him. I told him I didn't know any-
thing."

"You didn't get him into the night riders? You didn't
encourage him?" Mr. Munn demanded, leaning toward her.

" No," she said.   " I tried to keep him out"

"Why?11

" His father," she replied. " On account of his father. He's
a nice old man, and papa likes him so much, you know, and
he'd resigned from the board, and all. If he ever found out
Benton was in the night riders, you know how it would be."

"Is that all?"

"Well-----" and she hesitated. Then; "He's not much

better than a boy."

" He's old as you are," Mr. Munn said.

" I'm a year older."

" That doesn't make any difference," he insisted.

" People are different," she said.   " You know that."

" That was the reason?"

" Yes," she answered.